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Thread: How do you degree a cam?

  1. #1


    I guess it tells you exactly when the intake valve starts to open right? Is the same procedure used for stock cams and RV cams? Does it gain you much? Can somebody explain in detail about this? I know a fair amount about the facets of wrenching but I have never explored this part of engine building. I'm kinda curious....

  2. #2


    I was too. Apparently it verifies the manufacturer's specs. Most of the guys I talked to about this way back when said that for my application (<4500rpm) and with modern accurate cam grinds, it wasn't worth the trouble. However, they did say it might help a little. Not as critical I guess on my pig engines.

    Comp Cams website I think has an excellent online tutorial, or maybe Crane. And I'm sure those who know will be here soon. lol
    **I heart Bump_r **

  3. #3


    Thanks Tacoma! I'll see if I can wander over to their website today. I thought there were a few advanced engine builders here at the zone. I was hoping to hear from them.... I'll check out the site...

  4. #4


    I've done this a couple of times on some stoudt rat motors. It is a verification process that you'll need a couple of tools to do. A degree wheel, peice of wire, something for a piston stop (spin one way to stop, spin other way to stop and TDC is the middle), a runout guage/dial indicator in .001" increments. When guys start advancing or retarding cam timing then this process is key, otherwise it's a double check and really for the mostpart unnecessary. For a mule motor, put the cam 'straight up' and go!
    Big Blocks RULE!

  5. #5


    Just to add to Spicer's answer. Retard for low end torque and Advance for higher RPM horsepower. M1028
    If your not breakin\' something - Your NOT makin\' enough torque !!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Winlock, WA


    Actually, it's retard for higher rpm, and advance for low end.
    Either way, most new cams are best set straight up (they build the degree into the cam so you can run it straight up). And for the most part, the only reason to change it is because you can change the rpm of your power band slightly if and when needed.

  7. #7


    From JP Magazine, "In general, advancing cam timing moves the power curve lower, and retarding it moves it higher. That's more effective when enhancing a stock cam than aftermarket cams, since the aftermarket guys usually factor in a little timing advance beforehand."
    Big Blocks RULE!

  8. #8


    You guys are right , I know that !!! It just came out backwards M1028
    If your not breakin\' something - Your NOT makin\' enough torque !!

  9. #9


    Cool, I thought this thread was dead... Glad I checked back. Thanks for the info. I suppose for the motors I have built for my other jeeps this is not really needed. Thought I may have been missing something..

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    parsons Kansas


    most times when done its on an all out race engine and on blown and supercharged and turbo engines to get the most out of them and make sure the cam is properly timed and it verifys the advertised specs, say the cam 250 degrees at .050 with a degree wheel you can verify it and you can measure cam centerline,valve timing, tdc, bdc, valve overlap and fine tune cam for performance needs. its not really needed on a stock to slightly modified engine.
    67 M725, 67 M715, 68 M715

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